Professional Affiliations and Activities
Member, American Society of Primatologists (2010 - Present)
Multisensory modulation of body ownership in mice.
Neuroscience of consciousness
2020; 2020 (1): niz019
Body ownership is a fundamental aspect of self-consciousness that reflects more than the presence of physical body parts. As demonstrated by the rubber hand illusion (RHI), human brains construct body ownership experiences using available multisensory information. Experimental conditions similar to those that induce the RHI in humans have been recently adapted to induce the rubber tail illusion (RTI) in mice. Here, we show that the RTI is enhanced in both sexes of mice by repetitive synchronous stroking comprised of correlated visual and tactile stimulation of real and rubber tails compared to visual-only mimicked stroking conducted without tactile stimulation. The RTI also appears to be enhanced in female but not male mice by slow compared to fast stroking that reflects an interoceptive manipulation associated with affective touch in humans. Sex differences in slow stroking effects are exploratory and require replication in mice. Sex differences have not been reported for the RHI in healthy humans, but women rate slow stroking as more affectively pleasant compared to the ratings of men. Results suggest that the RHI in humans resembles aspects of the RTI in mice. Studies of mice may therefore provide neurobiological insights on evolutionarily conserved mechanisms of bodily self-consciousness in humans.
View details for DOI 10.1093/nc/niz019
View details for PubMedID 31988796
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6977007
Nonlinear relationship between early life stress exposure and subsequent resilience in monkeys.
2019; 9 (1): 16232
Retrospective correlational studies of humans suggest that moderate but not minimal or substantial early life stress exposure promotes the development of stress inoculation-induced resilience. Here we test for a nonlinear relationship between early life stress and resilience by comparing varying "doses" of early life stress. Juvenile squirrel monkeys underwent one of five treatment conditions between 17-27 weeks of age: Stress inoculation (SI) with continuous access to mother (SI + Mom; one stress element), SI without continuous access to mother (SI; two stress elements), SI without continuous access to mother and with alprazolam injection pretreatments (SI + Alz; three stress elements), SI without continuous access to mother and with vehicle injection pretreatments (SI + Veh; three stress elements), or standard housing (No SI; zero stress elements). Alprazolam was used to test whether anxiolytic medication diminished SI effects. Subjects exposed to one or two early life stressors subsequently responded with fewer indications of anxiety (e.g., decreased maternal clinging, increased object exploration, smaller cortisol increases) compared to No SI subjects. Subjects exposed to three early life stressors did not differ on most measures from one another or from No SI subjects. These findings provide empirical support for a nonlinear J-shaped relationship between early life stress exposure and subsequent resilience.
View details for DOI 10.1038/s41598-019-52810-5
View details for PubMedID 31700103
Cup tool use by squirrel monkeys
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PRIMATOLOGY
2015; 77 (12): 1323-1332
Captive-born male and female squirrel monkeys spontaneously 'invented' a cup tool use technique to Contain (i.e., hold and control) food they reduced into fragments for consumption and to Contain water collected from a valve to drink. Food cup use was observed more frequently than water cup use. Observations indicate that 68% (n = 39/57) of monkeys in this population used a cup (a plastic slip cap) to Contain food, and a subset of these monkeys, 10% (n = 4/39), also used a cup to Contain water. Cup use was optional and did not replace, but supplemented, the hand/arm-to-mouth eating and direct valve drinking exhibited by all members of the population. Strategies monkeys used to bring food and cups together for food processing activity at preferred upper-level perching areas, in the arboreal-like environment in which they lived, provides evidence that monkeys may plan food processing activity with the cups. Specifically, prior to cup use monkeys obtained a cup first before food, or obtained food and a cup from the floor simultaneously, before transporting both items to upper-level perching areas. After food processing activity with cups monkeys rarely dropped the cups and more often placed the cups onto perching. Monkeys subsequently returned to use cups that they previously placed on perching after food processing activity. The latter behavior is consistent with the possibility that monkeys may keep cups at preferred perching sites for future food processing activity and merits experimental investigation. Reports of spontaneous tool use by squirrel monkeys are rare and this is the first report of population-level tool use. These findings offer insights into the cognitive abilities of squirrel monkeys and provide a new context for behavior studies with this genus and for comparative studies with other primates. Am. J. Primatol. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
View details for DOI 10.1002/ajp.22486
View details for Web of Science ID 000363892500008
View details for PubMedID 26436899
Echocardiographic and Electrocardiographic Characteristics of Male and Female Squirrel Monkeys (Saimiri spp.).
Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science
2015; 54 (1): 25-28
Cardiomyopathy is a leading cause of mortality in aging squirrel monkeys (Saimiri spp.). However, data regarding echocardiographic measures obtained from clinically healthy nonsedated squirrel monkeys have not been published, and few electrocardiographic data are available. Here we obtained echocardiographs without sedation and electrocardiographs with minimal sedation from 63 clinically healthy squirrel monkeys that ranged from 3 to 20 y in age. 2D and M-mode echocardiography were performed on nonsedated monkeys to determine the left ventricular internal diameters at systole and diastole and the ejection fraction. Electrocardiography was performed under sedation with ketamine (15 mg/kg). Parameters evaluated included heart rate; P-wave duration; lengths of the PR, QRS, and QT intervals; R-wave amplitude, and P-wave amplitude. Initial physical examination, electrocardiography, and echocardiography indicated normal cardiac function for all monkeys. The objectives of this study were to provide reference values for nonsedated echocardiography and ketamine-sedated electrocardiography of clinically normal squirrel monkeys and to determine correlates of age and sex in these values.
View details for PubMedID 25651087
A novel form of oxytocin in New World monkeys
2011; 7 (4): 584-587
Oxytocin is widely believed to be present and structurally identical in all placental mammals. Here, we report that multiple species of New World monkeys possess a novel form of oxytocin, [P8] oxytocin. This mutation arises from a substitution of a leucine to a proline in amino acid position 8. Further analysis of this mutation in Saimiri sciureus (squirrel monkey) indicates that [P8] oxytocin is transcribed and translated properly. This mutation is specific to oxytocin, as the peptide sequence for arginine vasopressin, a structurally related nonapeptide, is unaltered. These findings dispel the notion that all placental mammals possess a 'universal' oxytocin sequence, and highlight the need for research on the functional significance of this novel nonapeptide in New World monkeys.
View details for DOI 10.1098/rsbl.2011.0107
View details for PubMedID 21411453
Early life stress and novelty seeking behavior in adolescent monkeys
2007; 32 (7): 785-792
Recent evidence suggests that early exposure to mild stress promotes the development of novelty seeking behavior. Here we test this hypothesis in squirrel monkeys and investigate whether novelty seeking behavior is associated with differences in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of the serotonin metabolite 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5HIAA), the dopamine metabolite homovanillic acid (HVA), the norepinephrine metabolite 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylethylene glycol (MHPG), and the neuropeptide corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF). Monkeys were randomized early in life to either mild intermittent stress (IS) or no stress (NS) conditions, and subsequently presented with opportunities to interact with a familiar or novel object in a test box that was connected to each monkey's home cage. To further minimize the potentially stressful nature of the test situation, monkeys were acclimated to the test procedures prior to study initiation. Post-test plasma levels of cortisol in IS and NS monkeys did not differ significantly from baseline levels measured in undisturbed conditions. During testing, more IS than NS monkeys voluntarily left the home cage, and IS monkeys spent more time in the test box compared to NS monkeys. More IS than NS monkeys engaged in object exploration in the test box, and IS monkeys preferred to interact with the novel vs. familiar object. Novelty seeking was not associated with differences in 5HIAA, HVA, MHPG, or CRF, but correlated with differences in object exploration observed in a different test situation at an earlier age. These trait-like differences in novelty seeking appear to reflect mild early stress-induced adaptations that enhance curiosity and resilience.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2007.05.008
View details for Web of Science ID 000249510200003
View details for PubMedID 17604913
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2716798
Maternal mediation, stress inoculation, and the development of neuroendocrine stress resistance in primates
PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
2006; 103 (8): 3000-3005
The stress inoculation hypothesis presupposes that brief intermittent stress exposure early in life induces the development of subsequent stress resistance in human and nonhuman primates. Rodent studies, however, suggest a role for maternal care rather than stress exposure per se (i.e., the maternal mediation hypothesis). To investigate these two hypotheses, we examined maternal care and the development of stress resistance after exposure to brief intermittent infant stress (IS), mother-infant stress (MIS), or no stress (NS) protocols administered to 30 monkeys between postnatal weeks 17 and 27. Unlike rodents, the IS condition did not permanently increase primate maternal care, nor did measures of total maternal care predict subsequent offspring hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal-axis responsivity. Although MIS infants received less maternal care than IS and NS infants, both IS and MIS monkeys developed subsequent stress resistance. These findings indicate that rearing differences in the development of stress resistance are more closely related to differences in prior stress exposure than to differences in maternal care. A second experiment confirmed this conclusion in a different cohort of 25 monkeys exposed as infants to high foraging-demand (HFD) or low foraging-demand (LFD) conditions. HFD infants exhibited intermittent elevations in cortisol levels and received less maternal care than LFD infants. In keeping with a key prediction of the stress inoculation hypothesis, HFD males responded to stress in adulthood with diminished hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal-axis activation compared with LFD males. Results from both experiments demonstrate that stress inoculation, rather than high levels of maternal care, promotes the development of primate stress resistance.
View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.0506571103
View details for Web of Science ID 000235554900093
View details for PubMedID 16473950
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC1413772
Neural cell adhesion molecule peptide mimetics modulate emotionality: pharmacokinetic and behavioral studies in rats and non-human primates
2019; 44 (2): 356–63
Recent evidence highlights the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family in emotion modulation. Although ligands that activate FGF receptors have antidepressant and anxiolytic effects in animal models, FGF ligands have a broad range of actions both in the brain and the periphery. Therefore, identifying molecular partners that may function as allosteric modulators could offer new avenues for drug development. Since neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) activates FGF receptors, we asked whether peripherally administered NCAM peptide mimetics penetrate the brain and alter the behavior of standardized tests that have predictive validity for drug treatments of anxiety or depression. The NCAM peptide mimetic, plannexin, acutely increased and chronically decreased anxiety, but did not have antidepressant effects in rats. Another NCAM peptide mimetic, FGLL, had acute anxiogenic effects and chronic antidepressant effects in rats. A related NCAM peptide mimetic, FGLS, had antidepressant effects without modulating anxiety-like behavior, and these antidepressant effects were blocked by an AMPA receptor antagonist. Cisternal cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of FGLs correlated with blood plasma levels in rats and non-human primates, and CSF-to-blood ratios of FGLS were comparable in both species. Results indicate that NCAM peptide mimetics penetrate the brain and support the suggestion that FGLS may be a candidate for further development as a novel treatment for major depressive disorder in humans.
View details for PubMedID 29703997
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6300554
Learning to actively cope with stress in female mice.
2018; 96: 78–83
Repeated exposure to a same-sex resident stranger enhances subsequent indications of active coping that generalize across multiple contexts in intruder male mice. Here we investigate female mice for comparable learning to cope training effects. Stress coping research focused on females is important because stress related mood and anxiety disorders are more prevalent in women than men. Female mice were monitored for coping behavior in open-field, object-exploration, and tail-suspension tests conducted after repeated exposure to a same-sex resident stranger. During repeated exposure sessions of training staged in the resident's home cage, behavioral measures of aggression and risk assessment were collected and plasma measures of the stress hormone corticosterone were obtained from separate samples of mice. Repeated exposure to a same-sex resident stranger subsequently enhanced active coping behavior exemplified by diminished freezing and increased center entries in the open-field, shorter object-exploration latencies, and a tendency toward decreased immobility on tail-suspension tests. Open-field locomotion considered as an index of non-specific activity was not increased by repeated sessions of exposure and did not correlate significantly with any measure of active coping. During repeated sessions of exposure to a same-sex resident stranger, risk assessment behavior and consistent but limited aggression occurred and corticosterone responses increased over repeated sessions. Exposure to a same-sex resident stranger is mildly stressful and promotes learning to actively cope in mice assessed in three different contexts.
View details for PubMedID 29909293
Striatal dopamine D2/3 receptor regulation by stress inoculation in squirrel monkeys.
Neurobiology of stress
2016; 3: 68-73
Intermittent mildly stressful situations provide opportunities to learn, practice, and improve coping in a process called stress inoculation. Stress inoculation also enhances cognitive control and response inhibition of impulsive motivated behavior. Cognitive control and motivation have been linked to striatal dopamine D2 and/or D3 receptors (DRD2/3) in rodents, monkeys, and humans. Here, we study squirrel monkeys randomized early in life to stress inoculation with or without maternal companionship and a no-stress control treatment condition. Striatal DRD2/3 availability in adulthood was measured in vivo by [(11)C]raclopride binding using positron emission tomography (PET). DRD2/3 availability was greater in caudate and putamen compared to ventral striatum as reported in PET studies of humans and other non-human primates. DRD2/3 availability in ventral striatum was also consistently greater in stress inoculated squirrel monkeys compared to no-stress controls. Squirrel monkeys exposed to stress inoculation in the presence of their mother did not differ from squirrel monkeys exposed to stress inoculation without maternal companionship. Similar effects in different social contexts extend the generality of our findings and together suggest that stress inoculation increases striatal DRD2/3 availability as a correlate of cognitive control in squirrel monkeys.
View details for PubMedID 27981179
Learning to cope with stress modulates anterior cingulate cortex stargazin expression in monkeys and mice
NEUROBIOLOGY OF LEARNING AND MEMORY
2016; 131: 95-100
Intermittent mildly stressful situations provide opportunities to learn, practice, and improve coping with gains in subsequent emotion regulation. Here we investigate the effects of learning to cope with stress on anterior cingulate cortex gene expression in monkeys and mice. Anterior cingulate cortex is involved in learning, memory, cognitive control, and emotion regulation. Monkeys and mice were randomized to either stress coping or no-stress treatment conditions. Profiles of gene expression were acquired with HumanHT-12v4.0 Expression BeadChip arrays adapted for monkeys. Three genes identified in monkeys by arrays were then assessed in mice by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Expression of a key gene (PEMT) involved in acetylcholine biosynthesis was increased in monkeys by coping but this result was not verified in mice. Another gene (SPRY2) that encodes a negative regulator of neurotrophic factor signaling was decreased in monkeys by coping but this result was only partly verified in mice. The CACNG2 gene that encodes stargazin (also called TARP gamma-2) was increased by coping in monkeys as well as mice randomized to coping with or without subsequent behavioral tests of emotionality. As evidence of coping effects distinct from repeated stress exposures per se, increased stargazin expression induced by coping correlated with diminished emotionality in mice. Stargazin modulates glutamate receptor signaling and plays a role in synaptic plasticity. Molecular mechanisms of synaptic plasticity that mediate learning and memory in the context of coping with stress may provide novel targets for new treatments of disorders in human mental health.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.nlm.2016.03.015
View details for Web of Science ID 000376224900012
View details for PubMedID 27003116
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4862929
Stress inoculation modeled in mice.
Stress inoculation entails intermittent exposure to mildly stressful situations that present opportunities to learn, practice and improve coping in the context of exposure psychotherapies and resiliency training. Here we investigate behavioral and hormonal aspects of stress inoculation modeled in mice. Mice randomized to stress inoculation or a control treatment condition were assessed for corticosterone stress hormone responses and behavior during open-field, object-exploration and tail-suspension tests. Stress inoculation training sessions that acutely increased plasma levels of corticosterone diminished subsequent immobility as a measure of behavioral despair on tail-suspension tests. Stress inoculation also decreased subsequent freezing in the open field despite comparable levels of thigmotaxis in mice from both treatment conditions. Stress inoculation subsequently decreased novel-object exploration latencies and reduced corticosterone responses to repeated restraint. These results demonstrate that stress inoculation acutely stimulates glucocorticoid signaling and then enhances subsequent indications of active coping behavior in mice. Unlike mouse models that screen for the absence of vulnerability to stress or presence of traits that occur in resilient individuals, stress inoculation training reflects an experience-dependent learning-like process that resembles interventions designed to build resilience in humans. Mouse models of stress inoculation may provide novel insights for new preventive strategies or therapeutic treatments of human psychiatric disorders that are triggered and exacerbated by stressful life events.
View details for DOI 10.1038/tp.2015.34
View details for PubMedID 25826112
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4354359
Coping and glucocorticoid receptor regulation by stress inoculation
2014; 49: 272-279
Intermittent exposure to mildly stressful situations provides opportunities to practice coping in the context of exposure psychotherapies and stress inoculation training. Previously, we showed that stress inoculation modeled in juvenile monkeys enhances subsequent indications of resilience. Here we examine stress inoculation effects in adult female monkeys. We found that stress inoculation prevents social separation stress induced anhedonia measured using sucrose preference tests and reduces the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis stress hormone response to a novel environment. Stress inoculation also increases glucocorticoid receptor (NR3C1) gene expression in anterior cingulate cortex but not hippocampus. Increased anterior cingulate cortex NR3C1 expression induced by stress inoculation is not associated with significant changes in GR1F promoter DNA methylation. On average, low levels of promoter DNA methylation and limited GR1F expression were evident in monkey anterior cingulate cortex as observed in corticolimbic brain regions of adult humans. Taken together these findings suggest that stress inoculation in adulthood enhances behavioral and hormonal aspects of coping without significantly influencing GR1F promoter DNA methylation as a mechanism for NR3C1 transcription regulation.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2014.07.020
View details for Web of Science ID 000343342900027
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4165807
Evaluation of s-1 receptor radioligand 18F-FTC-146 in rats and squirrel monkeys using PET.
Journal of nuclear medicine : official publication, Society of Nuclear Medicine
2014; 55 (1): 147-153
The noninvasive imaging of σ-1 receptors (S1Rs) could provide insight into their role in different diseases and lead to novel diagnostic/treatment strategies. The main objective of this study was to assess the S1R radiotracer (18)F-FTC-146 in rats. Preliminary squirrel monkey imaging and human serum/liver microsome studies were performed to gain information about the potential of (18)F-FTC-146 for eventual clinical translation.The distribution and stability of (18)F-FTC-146 in rats were assessed via PET/CT, autoradiography, γ counting, and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Preliminary PET/MRI of squirrel monkey brain was conducted along with HPLC assessment of (18)F-FTC-146 stability in monkey plasma and human serum.Biodistribution studies showed that (18)F-FTC-146 accumulated in S1R-rich rat organs, including the lungs, pancreas, spleen, and brain. Pretreatment with known S1R compounds, haloperidol, or BD1047, before radioligand administration, significantly attenuated (18)F-FTC-146 accumulation in all rat brain regions by approximately 85% (P < 0.001), suggesting radiotracer specificity for S1Rs. Similarly, PET/CT and autoradiography results demonstrated accumulation of (18)F-FTC-146 in rat brain regions known to contain S1Rs and that this uptake could be blocked by BD1047 pretreatment. Ex vivo analysis of (18)F-FTC-146 in the brain showed that only intact radiotracer was present at 15, 30, and 60 min, whereas rapid metabolism of residual (18)F-FTC-146 was observed in rat plasma. Preliminary monkey PET/MRI studies demonstrated specific accumulation of (18)F-FTC-146 in the brain (mainly in cortical structures, cerebellum, and vermis) that could be attenuated by pretreatment with haloperidol. HPLC of monkey plasma suggested radioligand metabolism, whereas (18)F-FTC-146 appeared to be stable in human serum. Finally, liver microsome studies revealed that (18)F-FTC-146 has a longer half-life in human microsomes, compared with rodents.Together, these results indicate that (18)F-FTC-146 is a promising tool for visualizing S1Rs in preclinical studies and that it has potential for mapping these sites in the human brain.
View details for DOI 10.2967/jnumed.113.120261
View details for PubMedID 24337599
Time-course of cerebrospinal fluid histamine in the wake-consolidated squirrel monkey
JOURNAL OF SLEEP RESEARCH
2012; 21 (2): 189-194
Central nervous system (CNS) histamine is low in individuals with narcolepsy, a disease characterized by severe fragmentation of both sleep and wake. We have developed a primate model, the squirrel monkey, with which we can examine the role of the CNS in the wake-consolidation process, as these primates are day-active, have consolidated wake and sleep and have cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) that is readily accessible. Using this model and three distinct protocols, we report herein on the role of CNS histamine in the wake consolidation process. CSF histamine has a robust daily rhythm, with a mean of 24.9 ± 3.29 pg mL(-1) , amplitude of 31.7 ± 6.46 pg mL(-1) and a peak at 17:49 ± 70.3 min (lights on 07:00-19:00 hours). These levels are not significantly affected by increases (up to 161 ± 40.4% of baseline) or decreases (up to 17.2 ± 2.50% of baseline) in locomotion. In direct contrast to the effects of sleep deprivation in non-wake-consolidating mammals, in whom CSF histamine increases, pharmacologically induced sleep (γ-hydroxybutyrate) and wake (modafinil) have no direct effects on CSF histamine concentrations. These data indicate that the time-course of histamine in CSF in the wake-consolidated squirrel monkey is robust against variation in activity and sleep and wake-promoting pharmacological compounds, and may indicate that histamine physiology plays a role in wake-consolidation such as is present in the squirrel monkey and humans.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2869.2011.00957.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000301931500010
View details for PubMedID 21910776
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3237761
Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis physiology and cognitive control of behavior in stress inoculated monkeys.
International journal of behavioral development
2012; 36 (1)
Monkeys exposed to stress inoculation protocols early in life subsequently exhibit diminished neurobiological responses to moderate psychological stressors and enhanced cognitive control of behavior during juvenile development compared to non-inoculated monkeys. The present experiments extended these findings and revealed that stress inoculated monkeys: (a) mount neurobiological responses equivalent to non-inoculated monkeys when the stressor is of sufficient intensity, and (b) continue to exhibit enhanced cognitive control as young adults compared to non-inoculated monkeys. These results suggest that stress inoculation protocols alter the appraisal of and response to moderate stressors as less threatening and permanently enhance cognitive control, at least through early adulthood. These data therefore support the notion that the stress inoculation phenotype reflects stress resilience rather than stress pathology.
View details for PubMedID 24353360
Somatic and neuroendocrine responses to standard and biologically salient acoustic startle stimuli in monkeys
2011; 36 (4): 547-556
The startle response, a simple defensive response to a sudden stimulus signaling proximal threat, has been well studied in rodents and humans, but has been rarely examined in monkeys. The first goal of the present studies was to develop a minimally immobilizing startle measurement paradigm and validate its usefulness by testing two core features of the startle response (habituation and graded responsivity) in squirrel monkey subjects. Two different types of startle stimuli were used: standard broad-band noise bursts, and species-specific alarm vocalizations ("yaps") which are elicited in response to threat in both wild and captive animals. The second goal of the present studies was to test whether yaps produce enhanced startle responsivity due to their increased biological salience compared to simple, non-biologically relevant noise bursts. The third goal of the present studies was to evaluate the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis response to startle stimuli, as little is known about the stress-activating role of startle stimuli in any species. These experiments determined that the whole-body startle response in relatively unrestrained squirrel monkeys habituates across repeated stimulus presentations and is proportional to stimulus intensity. In addition, differential habituation was observed across biologically salient vs. standard acoustic startle stimuli. Responses to "yaps" were larger initially but attenuated more rapidly over trials. Responses to "yaps" were also larger in the early subepochs of the response window but then achieved a lower level than responses to noise bursts in the later subepochs. Finally, adrenocorticotropic hormone and cortisol concentrations were significantly elevated above baseline after startle stimuli presentation, though monkeys did not exhibit differential HPA axis responses to the two types of startle stimuli. The development of monkey startle methodology may further enhance the utility of this paradigm in translational studies of human stress-related psychiatric disorders.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2010.08.009
View details for Web of Science ID 000288922300013
View details for PubMedID 20869176
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3020232
Stress coping stimulates hippocampal neurogenesis in adult monkeys
PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
2010; 107 (33): 14823-14827
Coping with intermittent social stress is an essential aspect of living in complex social environments. Coping tends to counteract the deleterious effects of stress and is thought to induce neuroadaptations in corticolimbic brain systems. Here we test this hypothesis in adult squirrel monkey males exposed to intermittent social separations and new pair formations. These manipulations simulate conditions that typically occur in male social associations because of competition for limited access to residency in mixed-sex groups. As evidence of coping, we previously confirmed that cortisol levels initially increase and then are restored to prestress levels within several days of each separation and new pair formation. Follow-up studies with exogenous cortisol further established that feedback regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis is not impaired. Now we report that exposure to intermittent social separations and new pair formations increased hippocampal neurogenesis in squirrel monkey males. Hippocampal neurogenesis in rodents contributes to spatial learning performance, and in monkeys we found that spatial learning was enhanced in conditions that increased hippocampal neurogenesis. Corresponding changes were discerned in the expression of genes involved in survival and integration of adult-born granule cells into hippocampal neural circuits. These findings support recent indications that stress coping stimulates hippocampal neurogenesis in adult rodents. Psychotherapies designed to promote stress coping potentially have similar effects in humans with major depression.
View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.0914568107
View details for Web of Science ID 000281287600055
View details for PubMedID 20675584
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2930418
Modafinil and gamma-hydroxybutyrate have sleep state-specific pharmacological actions on hypocretin-1 physiology in a primate model of human sleep
2009; 20 (7): 643-652
Hypocretin-1 is a hypothalamic neuropeptide that is important in the regulation of wake and the lack of which results in the sleep disorder narcolepsy. Using a monkey that has consolidated wake akin to humans, we examined pharmacological manipulation of sleep and wake and its effects on hypocretin physiology. Monkeys were given the sleep-inducing γ-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) and the wake-inducing modafinil both in the morning and in the evening. Cerebrospinal fluid hypocretin-1 concentrations changed significantly in response to the drugs only when accompanied by a behavioral change (GHB-induced sleep in the morning or modafinil-induced wake in the evening). We also found that there was a large (180-fold) interindividual variation in GHB pharmacokinetics that explains variability in sleep induction in response to the drug. Our data indicate that the neurochemical concomitants of sleep and wake are capable of changing the physiological output of hypocretin neurons. Sleep independent of circadian timing is capable of decreasing cerebrospinal fluid hypocretin-1 concentrations. Furthermore, hypocretin neurons do not seem to respond to an 'effort' to remain awake, but rather keep track of time spent awake as a wake-promoting counterbalance to extended wakefulness.
View details for DOI 10.1097/FBP.0b013e328331b9db
View details for Web of Science ID 000270483300010
View details for PubMedID 19752724
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2939929
Prefrontal Plasticity and Stress Inoculation-Induced Resilience
2009; 31 (4): 293-299
Coping with mild early life stress tends to make subsequent coping efforts more effective and therefore more likely to be used as a means of arousal regulation and resilience. Here we show that this developmental learning-like process of stress inoculation increases ventromedial prefrontal cortical volumes in peripubertal monkeys. Larger volumes do not reflect increased cortical thickness but instead represent surface area expansion of ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Expansion of ventromedial prefrontal cortex coincides with increased white matter myelination inferred from diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging. These findings suggest that the process of coping with early life stress increases prefrontal myelination and expands a region of cortex that broadly controls arousal regulation and resilience.
View details for DOI 10.1159/000216540
View details for PubMedID 19546566
Preliminary evidence that hippocampal volumes in monkeys predict stress levels of adrenocorticotropic hormone
2007; 62 (10): 1171-1174
Hippocampal volumes previously determined in monkeys by magnetic resonance imaging are used to test the hypothesis that small hippocampi predict increased stress levels of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH).Plasma ACTH levels were measured after restraint stress in 19 male monkeys pretreated with saline or hydrocortisone. Monkeys were then randomized to an undisturbed control condition or intermittent social separations followed by new pair formations. After 17 months of exposure to the intermittent social manipulations, restraint stress tests were repeated to determine test/retest correlations.Individual differences in postrestraint stress ACTH levels over the 17-month test/retest interval were remarkably consistent for the saline (r(s) = .82, p = .0004) and hydrocortisone (r(s) = .78, p = .001) pretreatments. Social manipulations did not affect postrestraint stress ACTH levels, but monkeys with smaller hippocampal volumes responded to restraint after saline pretreatment with greater increases in ACTH levels with total brain volume variation controlled as a statistical covariate (beta = -.58, p = .031). Monkeys with smaller hippocampal volumes also responded with diminished sensitivity to glucocorticoid feedback determined by greater postrestraint ACTH levels after pretreatment with hydrocortisone (beta = -.68, p = .010).These findings support clinical reports that small hippocampi may be a risk factor for impaired regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in humans with stress-related psychiatric disorders.
View details for DOI 10.1016/i.biopsych.2007.03.012
View details for Web of Science ID 000250905800015
View details for PubMedID 17573043
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2129091
Increasing length of wakefulness and modulation of hypocretin-1 in the wake-consolidated squirrel monkey
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-REGULATORY INTEGRATIVE AND COMPARATIVE PHYSIOLOGY
2007; 293 (4): R1736-R1742
The neuropeptides hypocretins (orexins), the loss of which results in the sleep disorder narcolepsy, are hypothesized to be involved in the consolidation of wakefulness and have been proposed to be part of the circadian-driven alertness signal. To elucidate the role of hypocretins in the consolidation of human wakefulness we examined the effect of wake extension on hypocretin-1 in squirrel monkeys, primates that consolidate wakefulness during the daytime as do humans. Wake was extended up to 7 h with hypocretin-1, cortisol, ghrelin, leptin, locomotion, and feeding, all being assayed. Hypocretin-1 (P < 0.01), cortisol (P < 0.001), and locomotion (P < 0.005) all increased with sleep deprivation, while ghrelin (P = 0.79) and leptin (P = 1.00) did not change with sleep deprivation. Using cross-correlation and multivariate modeling of these potential covariates along with homeostatic pressure (a measure of time awake/asleep), we found that time of day and homeostatic pressure together explained 44% of the variance in the hypocretin-1 data (P < 0.001), while cortisol did not significantly contribute to the overall hypocretin-1 variance. Locomotion during the daytime, but not during the nighttime, helped explain < 5% of the hypocretin-1 variance (P < 0.05). These data are consistent with earlier evidence indicating that in the squirrel monkey hypocretin-1 is mainly regulated by circadian inputs and homeostatic sleep pressure. Concomitants of wakefulness that affect hypocretin-1 in polyphasic species, such as locomotion, food intake, and food deprivation, likely have a more minor role in monophasic species, such as humans.
View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpregu.00460.2007
View details for Web of Science ID 000250088000033
View details for PubMedID 17686881
Intranasal oxytocin administration attenuates the ACTH stress response in monkeys
2005; 30 (9): 924-929
Social relationships protect against the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders, yet little is known about the neurobiology that regulates this phenomenon. Recent evidence suggests that oxytocin (OT), a neuropeptide involved in social bond formation, may play a role. This experiment investigated the effects of chronic intranasal OT administration on acute stress-induced hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activation in adult female squirrel monkeys. Subjects were randomized to one of two experimental conditions. Monkeys were intranasally administered either 50 microg oxytocin (N = 6 monkeys) or 0 microg oxytocin (N = 6 monkeys)/300 microl saline once a day for eight consecutive days. Immediately after drug administration on the eighth day, all monkeys were exposed to acute social isolation. Blood samples for determinations of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and cortisol concentrations were collected after 30 and 90 min of stress exposure. Consistent with an anti-stress effect, OT-treated monkeys exhibited lower ACTH concentrations compared to saline-treated monkeys after 90 min of social isolation (F(1,7) = 6.891; P = 0.034). No drug-related differences in cortisol levels were observed, indicating that OT does not directly attenuate the adrenal stress response. Intranasal peptide administration has been shown to penetrate the central nervous system, and research must determine whether intranasally delivered OT exerts its effect(s) at a pituitary and/or brain level. This primate model offers critical opportunities to improve our understanding of the anti-stress effects of OT and may lead to novel pharmacological treatments for stress-related psychiatric disorders.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2005.04.002
View details for Web of Science ID 000231003800012
View details for PubMedID 15946803
Mild early life stress enhances prefrontal-dependent response inhibition in monkeys
2005; 57 (8): 848-855
Severely stressful early experiences have been implicated in the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders. In contrast, exposure to mild early life stress (i.e., stress inoculation) strengthens emotional and neuroendocrine resistance to subsequent stressors. Herein we extend this research to examine the effects of mild early life stress on cognition.Squirrel monkeys were randomized to a mild intermittent stress (IS; n = 11) or nonstress (NS; n = 9) condition from 17 to 27 weeks postpartum. At 1.5 years of age, monkeys were assessed for response inhibition on a test previously shown to reflect prefrontal-dependent cognitive function.IS monkeys demonstrated fewer response inhibition errors compared with NS monkeys. There were no rearing-related differences in aspects of performance that did not require inhibitory control. Compared with NS monkeys, IS monkeys had lower basal plasma pituitary-adrenal stress hormone levels. No rearing-related differences on neuroendocrine measures obtained 15 minutes after testing were found.Results from this experiment provide the first evidence that exposure to mildly stressful early experiences improves prefrontal-dependent response inhibition in primates. Combined with our previous data, findings from this animal model suggest that exposure to mild early life stress may enhance the development of brain systems that regulate emotional, neuroendocrine, and cognitive control.
View details for Web of Science ID 000228280700004
View details for PubMedID 15820705
Prospective investigation of stress inoculation in young monkeys
ARCHIVES OF GENERAL PSYCHIATRY
2004; 61 (9): 933-941
Retrospective studies in humans have identified characteristics that promote stress resistance, including childhood exposure to moderately stressful events (ie, stress inoculation).Because of limited opportunities for prospective studies in children, we tested whether exposure to moderate stress early in life produces later stress resistance in a primate model.Twenty squirrel monkeys were randomized to intermittent stress inoculation (IS; n = 11) or a nonstress control condition (NS; n = 9) from postnatal weeks 17 to 27. At postnatal week 35, each mother-offspring dyad underwent testing in a moderately stressful novel environment for inferential measures of offspring anxiety (ie, maternal clinging, mother-offspring interactions, object exploration, and food consumption) and stress hormone concentrations (corticotropin [ACTH] and cortisol). At postnatal week 50, after acclimation to an initially stressful wire-mesh box attached to the home cage, independent young monkeys underwent testing for inferential measures of anxiety (ie, voluntary exploration and play) in the box.In the novel environment test, IS compared with NS offspring demonstrated diminished anxiety as measured by decreased maternal clinging (P =.02), enhanced exploratory behavior (P =.005), and increased food consumption (P =.02). Mothers of IS offspring accommodated offspring-initiated exploration (P =.009) and served as a secure base more often compared with NS mothers (P =.047). Compared with NS offspring, IS offspring had lower basal plasma ACTH (P =.001) and cortisol (P =.001) concentrations and lower corticotropin (P =.04) and cortisol (P =.03) concentrations after stress. In the subsequent home-cage wire-box test, IS offspring demonstrated enhanced exploratory (P<.001) and play (P =.008) behaviors compared with NS offspring.These results provide the first prospective evidence that moderately stressful early experiences strengthen socioemotional and neuroendocrine resistance to subsequent stressors. This preclinical model offers essential opportunities to improve our understanding and enhance prevention of human stress-related psychiatric disorders by elucidating the etiology and neurobiology of stress resistance.
View details for Web of Science ID 000223726200009
View details for PubMedID 15351772
Locomotor-dependent and -independent components to hypocretin-1 (orexinA) regulation in sleep-wake consolidating monkeys
JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-LONDON
2004; 557 (3): 1045-1053
The hypocretin system is involved in the integration of hypothalamic functions with sleep and wake. Hypocretin-1 release peaks at the end of the active period in both diurnal and nocturnal species. A role for hypocretin-1 in the generation of locomotor activity has been suggested by electrophysiological and neurochemical studies in rodents, dogs and cats. These species, however, do not consolidate wake into a single, daily bout and manipulations of locomotion elicit changes in wakefulness, making it difficult to parse the relative contribution of these two factors. We have examined the relationship between locomotion and hypocretin-1 in a wake-consolidating animal, the squirrel monkey (Saimiri sciureus). Strikingly, we found that restricting locomotion to 17% of usual activity had no significant effect on the normal diurnal rise in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) hypocretin-1, despite an associated increase in CSF cortisol. Increasing locomotion to greater than baseline activity did not significantly increase CSF hypocretin-1 concentrations, but did appear to have a positive modulatory effect on CSF hypocretin-1. In this wake-consolidating animal, locomotion is not necessary for CSF hypocretin-1 to increase throughout the daytime, but high levels of locomotion are likely to provide a small positive feedback onto the hypocretin system.
View details for DOI 10.1113/jphysiol.2004.061606
View details for Web of Science ID 000222403700029
View details for PubMedID 15107479
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC1665142
Circadian and homeostatic regulation of hypocretin in a primate model: Implications for the consolidation of wakefulness
JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE
2003; 23 (8): 3555-3560
In humans, consolidation of wakefulness into a single episode can be modeled as the interaction of two processes, a homeostatic "hour-glass" wake signal that declines throughout the daytime and a circadian wake-promoting signal that peaks in the evening. Hypocretins, novel hypothalamic neuropeptides that are dysfunctional in the sleep disorder narcolepsy, may be involved in the expression of the circadian wake-promoting signal. Hypocretins (orexins) are wake-promoting peptides, but their role in normal human sleep physiology has yet to be determined. We examined the daily temporal pattern of hypocretin-1 in the cisternal CSF of the squirrel monkey, a New World primate with a pattern of wake similar to that of humans. Hypocretin-1 levels peaked in the latter third of the day, consistent with the premise that hypocretin-1 is involved in wake regulation. When we lengthened the wake period by 4 hr, hypocretin-1 concentrations remained elevated, indicating a circadian-independent component to hypocretin-1 regulation. Changes in the stress hormone cortisol were not correlated with hypocretin-1 changes. Although hypocretin-1 is at least partially activated by a reactive homeostatic mechanism, it is likely also regulated by the circadian pacemaker. In the squirrel monkey, hypocretin-1 works in opposition to the accumulating sleep drive during the day to maintain a constant level of wake.
View details for Web of Science ID 000182475200052
View details for PubMedID 12716965